Morning Brief: SP Power Tussle Intensifies; SBI Cuts Home Loan Rates; Grand Modi Rally

Morning
Brief: SP Power Tussle Intensifies; SBI Cuts Home Loan Rates; Grand Modi RallyMulayam Singh Yadav (Sanjay Kanojia/AFP/Getty Images)

Good Morning, Swarajya Readers! Here's What You Need To Know Today.

Yadav Family Power Struggle Continues: The power struggle in Samajwadi Party (SP) took another dramatic turn on the New Year’s Day with Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav camps sacking each other’s men to take control of the party.

India Won’t Shy Away From Using Power, Says New Army Chief: New Army Chief General Bipin Rawat on Sunday said the country and the force want to maintain peace and tranquility on the border, but it will not shy away from using its power in any form. Rawat on Saturday had taken over charge as chief of the 13 lakh-strong Indian Army.

SBI Cuts Home Loan Rates To New Low: Home loan rates have fallen to their lowest level in six years with the State Bank of India (SBI), the country's largest lender, cutting benchmark interest rate across various maturities by 0.9 per cent. The move comes a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked banks to prioritise lending towards poor and lower middle class. This move is expected to be shortly followed by other banks too.

Stage Set For Grand Lucknow Rally By Modi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address a public rally in Lucknow on Monday, his first in the capital of poll-bound Uttar Pradesh since the end of the demonetisation exercise on 30 December. Modi is expected to make a few other policy initiatives, following a series of feel-good announcements he made on the New Year’s Eve.

Opposition Gears Up For GST Battle: With a meeting of the goods and services tax (GST) council due in two days, opposition parties are gearing up to put up a united front against the country’s biggest tax reform, and pressure the Narendra Modi government into accepting their two key demands. GST council is meeting on 3 and 4 January to hammer out the differences amid speculations that GST may be delayed.

Two Indians Among Istanbul Terror Attack Victims: Two Indians were among the 39 people killed in the Istanbul nightclub attack on Sunday during New Year celebrations. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj confirmed the deaths. Early morning on Sunday a terrorist dressed as Santa Claus attacked Reina nightclub leaving 39 dead, including 16 foreigners, and more than 69 injured.

Fuel Prices Increased: Petrol price was on Sunday increased by Rs 1.29 a litre, the third increase in a month, and diesel rate was raised by 97 paise a litre, the second hike in a fortnight. The increase in rates announced by oil firms is excluding state levies and the actual hike will be higher.

Pakistanis Hack NSG Website: Suspected Pakistan-affiliated operatives on Sunday hacked the official website of the elite National Security Guard (NSG) and defaced it with anti-India content. An image of police thrashing civilians was also uploaded on to the site’s homepage with the accompanying text calling for “Free Kashmir”. The hackers identified themselves as ‘Alone Injector’.

Patanjali Ayurved Biggest Disruptor: According to a report, Patanjali Ayurved was the biggest disruptive force in India’s FMCG market. It witnessed a whopping annual growth of 146 per cent in fiscal year 2016 grossing a turnover of $769 million, whereas its peers struggled to get a growth much less than double digit, said the Assocham–TechSci research report.

MUST READ OP-EDS

India Against Corruption Will Be The Mantra In 2017: Modi has linked the narrative of fighting corruption to every major policy initiative his government is undertaking. By arguing that it is the singular reason for failed aspirations, Modi has touched a raw nerve in Indian society.

Demonetisation’s Hydra-Headed Critics: Ill-informed or misguided criticisms of demonetisation are akin to the Lernaean Hydra of Greek mythology: As soon as one chops off one of the heads, another replaces it.

Consumer-Oriented Tech Expected To Shine In 2017: In a nutshell 2017 will see IT solutions providers innovatively leveraging these technologies for the next-level of enterprise digital-transformation.

2017 Brings With It Things That Make Us Feel Cleaner: Clearly, the common man’s confidence in Narendra Modi hasn’t been shaken. To keep it going, the Centre will have to make a Herculean effort.

SWARAJYA SPECIAL

Towards Winning 2019 - Here Are 17 Things BJP & Modi Govt Must Do In 2017: The year 2017 will be a year of consolidation for the government as well as the BJP, before the heavy lifting for the 2019 election begins next year. Here are the 17 things for 2017 that should be focused on.

Deterrence Against The Dragon: Why Agni’s Arc Worries China: The Agni-V test has set off Beijing’s deepest insecurities of being encircled, resulting in the dragon issuing petulant statements not befitting a country of its size and strength.

We hope you enjoyed reading our morning brief. Have a great day ahead!

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